What is it like for Young People on Boards?

Tanya Dupagne, Local Councillor at City of Kwinana, Rhys Williams, Deputy Chair, Regional Development Australia Peel, Board Member, Peel Development Commission and Local Council, City of Mandurah, Tristan Kolay, Deputy State Chairman, Knights of the Southern Cross and Vice Chair, Infant Jesus Parish Council make up this panel. Some of the interesting points they raise include:

  • Stereotypes such as young people not having the time or the flexibility to join a Board are not always true. It depends on the young person
  • Younger Board members look for the same things that older Board members look for: that is, being involved in the wider community, making a difference and feeling welcomed and appreciated
  • Don’t put too much pressure on young Board Directors to deliver straight away. Give them time/mentorship to understand the organisation and the processes. This might take a year or so.
  • The Best model for young people on Boards is when the young person’s interest is matched with the organisation
  • Note to younger directors – Young people have to be prepared to commit for a long time on a Board for it to be really worthwhile
  • How to engage young people on Boards? It can be a constitutional requirement or a process of the nominations committee to include a young applicant in the selection mix.

(Engaging Young Leaders on Aged Care Boards: Finding Potential Unconvention, February 2013).

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